THERE are about 24,700 senior citizens registered in Manila that are actually non-existent and which could spell losses of about P148 million a year if left unchecked.
This was learned from Mayor Isko Moreno, who said the ‘missing senior citizens’ had been causing the delay in the release of the PayMaya cards since the Office of the Senior Citizens’ Affairs (OSCA) headed by Marjun Isidro is virtually cleansing the list.
Moreno’s pronouncements came following a recent raid in Binondo where, along with bogus P1,000 bills and passport, some fake senior citizens’ identification cards were also confiscated.
“Kaya na-delay…nasakripisyo mga senior citizens. Kaya kami nag-manual nung Pasko. Nalaman naming mahigit 24,000 ang fake na pangalan. Pag hinayaan namin, matatapon na parang bula ang pera ng gobyerno,” Moreno said.
He noted that with the P500 monthly financial assistance being given to senior citizens, having at least 24,000 fake elderly citizens would spell a loss of some P12 million a month or about P148 million a year in city government funds.
“Kaya di n’yo ko masisisi na maging masinop dahil bago pa ako mag-mayor, inabuso ito (OSCA IDs). Pineke nang pineke..kaya nga sinisinop ko, pero kahit pano ni-release namin manual,” Moreno said.
“Mga walanghiya, pati benepisyo ng mga tao ninanakaw..tignan nyo, nahirapan mga senior kaya kami nag-manual,” the mayor added.
Isidro said that so far, around 85,000 senior citizens have been given PayMaya cards while 60,000 more are still being processed.
The city government, through the initiative of Moreno and the full support of the Manila City Council headed by Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna as its presiding officer and majority floorleader Atty. Joel Chua, has a social amelioration package that grants cash assistance to various sectors.
Apart from that being given to senior citizens, the beneficiaries include students of the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) and Universidad de Manila (UdM) who receive P1,000 monthly and Grade 12 students, persons with disability and solo parents.